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The Performance Life

Recovery Trip

nicholas_t / flickr

Preseason has started, and I’m about to die. I know students everywhere are facing the challenges of a new school year and new sports seasons, so I’ll write again soon about how I’m dealing with those challenges.

But before the start of school, I had one final bout of recovery. Reaching my final destination of Tucson, Arizona after my 28-hour trip through the Americas, I decided to use the few days I had left before the start of preseason to recover from our South America trip—both mentally as well as physically.

The conditions for recovery were perfect – I love the dry desert heat and I had a car at my disposal and a pool in the backyard.

My first mission was easy to accomplish: Get out of the airport, forget my nutrition plan for a night, and get a Double-Double and a milkshake from In-N-Out Burger. I’m glad they don’t have those out on the East Coast or I’d have a hard time keeping my ideal soccer weight.

Back at the house, I took one of the most refreshing showers of my life and finally got in some quality sleep. To get the last bit of rustiness from the travel out of my legs I went for a quick run in the morning and then bought some groceries to make sure I’d eat clean over the next days to make up for the nutrition debacle from the night before. From there, my agenda was simple: Relax, hang out with friends, and watch the Olympics.

But the highlight of my days in Arizona was a day trip to Athletes’ Performance in Tempe. It was great to see the guys behind this website again. I hadn’t been there in over two years. The level of professionalism of both the people that work and work out there always inspires me and is part of the reason I’ve been treating my training as serious as possible.

I took a Functional Movement Screen (check out Gray Cook’s Athletic Body in Balance – a great book that will allow you to get a quick at-home FMS), as well as a VO2-Max assessment.

My FMS score was better than it was two years ago, indicating that the progress I have felt over time is real. I was surprised when I was told that my VO2-Max was average for soccer players my age – I was expecting it to be lower since I had not been able to do very much in the off-season because of my ankle injury. But that as well shows how well the ESD is working.

I thought I was ready for the upcoming season, but now after taking these tests, I know I’m ready.

Tags: Relaxation, Leisure Time, Soccer, Travel, College, Rest